The city of Abilene is bracing itself for an epic showdown as the Abilene Eagles take on the Abilene Cooper Cougars in the 63rd meeting of their storied football rivalry. Set to kick off at Shotwell Stadium on September 1, 2023, this game holds a special place as it marks the 20th season of the prestigious Great American Rivalry Series.

The Abilene Cooper Cougars have had the upper hand in this historic rivalry, boasting a 36-25-1 advantage in the all-time series. However, the Abilene Eagles are riding high from their previous meeting, where they snatched a hard-fought 14-10 victory and brought home the cherished Rivalry Trophy.

As the teams prepare to take the field, the anticipation is building, with 15,000 fervent fans expected to pack the stands at Shotwell Stadium. The atmosphere will be electric as the passionate supporters of both teams converge to witness this clash of titans.

Reflecting on the significance of this matchup, Rick Ford, founder, and CEO of the Great American Rivalry Series, remarked, “The Abilene vs. Abilene Cooper rivalry embodies the essence of high school football. For over six decades, these two programs have battled fiercely, creating unforgettable moments that define the spirit of this great sport. As we celebrate the 20th season of the Great American Rivalry Series, this game holds a special place in our hearts, symbolizing the intensity and passion of these communities.”

The Abilene Eagles and the Abilene Cooper Cougars have poured their hearts and souls into their preparations for this momentous clash. Every practice, every drill has been geared towards asserting dominance on the field and securing victory for their respective schools.

The 63rd meeting between these two rivals promises to be an epic chapter in their storied history. The players will leave it all on the field, fueled by the memories of past encounters and the desire to etch their names in the annals of this legendary rivalry.

When the clock starts ticking, Shotwell Stadium will become a battlefield, where tradition, pride, and relentless determination collide. The Battle for Abilene is set to captivate the senses and create indelible memories for players and fans alike. Fans be ready for another exciting year because We Know Friday Nights!


Ryland Bradford


Lucas David

Abilene Cooper

Lucas has been a 3-year letterman for the varsity football team and is a senior captain. He is also involved with NHS, student council and NSHSS. Lucas plans to attend college to pursue a degree at Texas Tech University in Aero Space Engineering.
Kevin Rivera


Kevin is involved in football and powerlifting and he is a 3-year member of the National Honor Society. Kevin plans to study engineering in college. He is unsure what college he plans to attend, however, he does want to stay in Texas.


Deep in the heart of Texas, the Eagles got things rolling with a 27-yard field goal in the 1st quarter following a forced fumble by the Eagles Defense. The Cougars defense gave their offense a chance of their own with a fumble recovery of their own late in the 1st quarter but the Cougars offense was unable to capitalize. The Eagles offense got it going on the next drive, where Ryland Bradford made up for his earlier fumble by scoring on a 81 yard pass-catch-and take it to the house play 88 yard giving the Eagles an early 10-0 lead at the end of the quarter. With just over 10 minutes left in the 2nd quarter, a 48 yard punt return by Demarco Upshaw increased Abilene's lead to 16-0 after a missed PAT. Following a pair of turnovers by both teams, the Cougars got on the board late in the half with their best drive of the game, and it was 16-7 at the half Eagles. The Eagles came out and re-established themselves with a 7 minute, 16-play drive to open the 2nd half with QB, Dylan Slack on a sneak to increase the Eagles lead to 23-7. Another field goal with 5 minutes left in the game gave Abilene High all they would need and a 26-7 win over their rivals Abilene Cooper. It was a back-to-back Crosstown Showdown win for the Eagles, and the school’s 26th in the history of the rivalry. The hard-fought rivalry between the Eagles and the Cougars made for another great night of Texas high school football and the Great American Rivalry Series!